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Global Emergency Medical Teams (EMT)

Global Emergency Medical Teams (EMT)

We support the World Health Organisation Emergency Medical Teams Initiative through our research and training development project.

Global Emergency Medical Teams (EMT)

The World Health Organization (WHO) Emergency Medical Teams (EMT) Initiative

After the Haiti earthquake in Jan 2010, the WHO Pan America Health Organisation (PAHO) and partners convened the first meeting on Emergency Medical Team ("Foreign Medical Teams" at that time) in Cuba to discuss the Haiti response and concluded the need to set standards and a coordination mechanism for EMT. That was the start of the initiative.


In 2013, WHO issued the Classification and Minimum Standards for Emergency Medical Teams (the “Blue Book”) in sudden-onset disasters such as earthquakes and typhoons. These guidelines outline principles and set forth core standards for how registered EMTs must function. The "Blue Book" was used for Typhoon Haiyan operation in 2013 for the first time. Since 2016, the WHO has been registering and verifying qualified EMTs. According to the WHO, over 70 EMTs from over 30 countries have since registered and is in the progress of documentary review from the WHO secretariat with nearly 20 EMTs successfully classified.


For more detailed timeline of the development of the WHO EMT Initiative, please head to the WHO EMT Initiative Historical Timeline. For more information on the WHO EMT Initiative, please head to the WHO EMT Initiative Extranet.


“Training and Research Development for Emergency Medical Teams with Reference to the WHO Global Emergency Medical Teams Initiative and the WHO Classification and Standards”

Since Feb 2016, HKJCDPRI has been supporting the WHO EMT Initiative in its development. In Sept 2016, HKJCDPRI officially signed a collaborative agreement with the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute of the University of Manchester to further develop trainings and research agenda in support of the WHO EMT Initiative.


The project aims to develop training and capacity building programmes that are in accordance with the WHO minimum standards, and through identification of best practice and development of standard field operating procedures in interactive and stimulating brainstorming to professionalize EMTs. The project has since delivered a series of trainings, including workshops and exchange tours for EMTs and those interested in the development of EMTs.


On 5-8 April 2016, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Disaster Preparedness and Response Institute (HKJCDPRI) joined the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Emergency Medical Team (EMT) Initiative delegation to visit Beijing and Shanghai to discuss the classification of Chinese EMTs. The delegation consisted of Dr Ian Norton, lead of WHO Global EMT Initiative, Prof Anthony Redmond from University of Manchester Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute (HCRI) and representatives from HKJCDPRI.


(The link to the full article is under "To Know More" on the right) Prehosp Disaster Med. 2015;30(2):1-7 Anisa J. N. Jafar1, Ian Norton2, Fiona Lecky3 and Anthony D. Redmond1 1 HCRI, Ellen Wilkinson Building, University of Manchester, Manchester, United Kingdom2 National Critical Care and Trauma Response Center, Darwin, Australia3 EMRiS Group, ScHARR, Sheffield, United Kingdom   Background Medical records are a tenet of good medical practice and provide one method of communicating individual follow-up arrangements, informing research data, and documenting medical intervention.  
A ten-member delegation from Hong Kong Academy of Medicine (HKAM) paid a visit to Sichuan and attended work meetings with Health and Family Planning Commission of Sichuan Province, Chinese National Emergency Medical Team members from Sichuan Provincial People’s Hospital and West China Hospital of Sichuan University, and Institute for Disaster Management and Reconstruction (IDMR).
Two experts from the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr Rick Brennan, Director of the Department of Emergency Risk Management and Humanitarian Response and his team member Dr Ian Norton, technical adviser and project leader of Foreign Medical Teams, recently paid a visit to the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine (HKAM) on the 11 & 12 Nov 2015.    


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